How Somalia intelligence has been combating Al-Shabaab


Part of the arsenal of weapons that was recovered from a house in Mogadishu by Somalia intelligence agents.

Photo credit: Courtesy

What you need to know:

  • Military operations have been scaled up in Mogadishu to counter Al-Shabaab.
  • In the last few months there has been improved security in Mogadishu.

Terror group Al-Shabab has been carrying out bombings and direct attacks in Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia for a long time, leading to deaths of thousands and massive destruction of property.

Currently, military operations have been scaled up in Mogadishu to counter Al-Shabaab, and in the last few months there has been improved security in the city.

On May 20, 2023, the Somali National Security and Intelligence Agency (NISA) seized two containers of military uniforms and many weapons, including explosive devices, which were intended for Al-Shabaab, in the port of Mogadishu.

Prevent terrorism

Five days after that operation, NISA forces intercepted a car full of weapons which were to be delivered to Al-Shabaab. After investigations, intelligence forces found a house where weapons intended to cause trouble in the capital were stored.

About 20 people, including businessmen and members of Al-Shabaab, were arrested in connection to the incident. The suspects are currently being investigated.

A year ago, before the change of leadership of the Somali intelligence service, the role of NISA was to search for information and to prevent terrorism. The current Director of NISA, Mr Mahad Salad, has emphasized on three things.

Improved security

First was leading the fight against Al-Shabaab militants, who have now been uprooted from many regions of the country.

Second was leading the security stabilization of Somalia's capital, which was where Al-Shabaab used to carry out many attacks.

Lastly was strengthening of the Intelligence units of the agency and NISA's cooperation with other regional and international agencies.

The change of leadership in NISA has given residents of Mogadishu hope and greatly improved security in the capital city.